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Celebrating Women featuring Dionne DeGourville, Runner, Triathlete, Coach, & Author

by | Mar 24, 2021 | Episodes | 0 comments

In this episode of The Run Wave Podcast, we’re continuing the celebration of Women this Women’s History Month, featuring Dionne DeGourville aka @dd_fitspiration.   She is a runner, 20 time marathoner, triathlete, 7 time Ironman, Coach, and author of her new book On A Mission.  We discuss her journey into running, how she became a triathlete, her focus on nutrition, and her reasoning for writing her first book.
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Episode Transcript

[00:00:00] Kim: [00:00:00] This episode is sponsored by Mid Strike Magazine. The first diverse digital runners magazine visit to keep up to date on all of your diverse running news.

[00:00:21] Women’s history month continues with runner triathlete and coach Dionne, aka DD Fitspiration. Hey everybody. Welcome back to another episode of The Run Wave Podcast. I am your host Kim. If this is your first time tuning in, welcome to the show. If you are a return listener. Welcome back. I truly appreciate you tuning into this show week after week. If you are watching the show at [00:01:00] home, you see me sport and my fly, The Run Wave hoodie.

[00:01:04] Be sure to support the show and pick up your own hoodie. You can go to The Run and order a hoodie for yourself. They come in a variety of colors and we also have some ride, this wave tees and a cute ride. This wave hoodie as well. So be sure to go to the website and cop you some fresh, The Run Wave gear.

[00:01:28] It is still March and I am continuing highlighting great women for women’s history month. And next up I have Dionne. She is someone that I have known. Practically since the start of my running journey and our running slash Triathlon journeys have taken similar paths. And she is one of the reasons why I actually got into triathlon, why I ran my first [00:02:00] marathon.

[00:02:00] She’s just really been an inspiration, which lives up to her name, DD fitspiration, she’s been an inspiration to me for a very long time. And I think that you will really get into her story because it is just a story that fits so many of us. So it is very relatable. She’s a very relatable person and she also has a great book that is out, but you should definitely check out.

[00:02:28] So let’s get into our chat. All right, everybody, please. Welcome to the show. Runner, marathoner, iron man, fitness, nutrition, coach, triathlon coach. Oh, shoot. She’s a bunch of things. We’ll get into that. So please walk them Dionne to the show. Well, good. How are 

[00:02:55] Dionne: [00:02:55] you? I’m good. Thank you so much for having me. 

[00:03:00] [00:02:59] Kim: [00:02:59] Of course.

[00:03:00] It’s a long time coming. 

[00:03:02] Dionne: [00:03:02] Yes. Yes. I watched the shows all the time. They are so cool. So congratulations on The Run Wave. 

[00:03:10] Kim: [00:03:10] Thank you so much. I feel like I haven’t seen you like in person 

[00:03:14] Dionne: [00:03:14] in forever. It has been forever probably since I last trip together. 

[00:03:21] Kim: [00:03:21] 2019, April. 

[00:03:23] Dionne: [00:03:23] Yeah, that’s about right. Wow. 

[00:03:26] Kim: [00:03:26] Did I see you like a marathon?

[00:03:28] I think you won’t you ways before me, so each other there, but we see a tunnel on online. So it feels like we see each other more than we do, but yes, I’m happy to be able to finally with you on 

[00:03:41] Dionne: [00:03:41] the show. Yes. Thank you so much for having me happy to be here. 

[00:03:47] Kim: [00:03:47] Tell everyone a little bit about Deon. Where are you originally from?

[00:03:51] Dionne: [00:03:51] Sure. So my name is Deon. I am from the South shore of long Island. New York is pretty much [00:04:00] where I lived all my life. This is where I grew up. Um, I am 48 years old. I’ll be 49 this year. Um, I am a police officer with the Hempstead police department, uh, with the rank of detective and I’m assigned to the FBI gang task force, which I’ve been with them.

[00:04:26] The FBI has kind of barred me since, uh, 2009. I’ve been with them when the task force, since 2009, uh, I’ve been on a job in total for 24 years. Next year will be my 25th year. Wow. 

[00:04:42] Kim: [00:04:42] So you lived on long Island, your whole life, 

[00:04:45] Dionne: [00:04:45] my whole life, Kim I’ve, um, born and raised South shore long Island. We’ll tell you the exact town, but I didn’t know that.

[00:04:55] Yeah. Yeah. Well, you born in Atlanta.

[00:05:03] [00:05:00] Well, I know your mom lives in Atlanta, so where, where were you born in the 

[00:05:08] Kim: [00:05:08] Bronx? I’m from the Bronx. My mom moved to Atlanta 

[00:05:12] Dionne: [00:05:12] like six years ago. So that’s why I’m back and 

[00:05:14] Kim: [00:05:14] forth there so much, but why I thought you were from somewhere 

[00:05:19] Dionne: [00:05:19] else? No, so my parents are from Trinidad. I’m not sure that’s um, uh, but I was born here in the States.

[00:05:28] Um, but my parents are from Trinidad and Tobago, which is an Island in the Caribbean. Okay. 

[00:05:34] Kim: [00:05:34] Okay. So how do you like being a detective? A woman detective. 

[00:05:39] Dionne: [00:05:39] Yeah, so I love my job. Um, these last few years has been a little challenging. Um, but, um, it’s a career that, that I’d love to be honest with you. Um, It’s, you know, sometimes you’re like a girl trying to fit into a [00:06:00] guy’s world at work.

[00:06:01] Cause, um, the team that I belong on is, uh, an all men’s team. Um, it’s been like that since I joined. Um, but you know, you kind of get used to it and, um, kinda like one of the guys now, you know, so how is 

[00:06:20] Kim: [00:06:20] it? Are there a lot of women on the police force? 

[00:06:24] Dionne: [00:06:24] That’s a good question. So the Hempstead police department, like Freeport, Kim has their own police department.

[00:06:32] It’s a small village and we now have a lot of women on appointed department. Our department is really small. It’s about, I would say maybe close to 130 officers in total that’s including bosses and the chief. Um, and I would say. Well, when I came on, there was only, I don’t know, maybe four women, maybe five, I think one half retired that [00:07:00] year.

[00:07:00] Um, now we have, I would say at least 15 women, it sounds like it’s not a lot, but with the department of a hundred, it’s, you know, they’ve, they’ve come a long way. We have Hispanic women, we have black women, we have, uh, some white women. Um, they’ve, they’ve come a long way. I would send, we have at least 15 to 18 women now.

[00:07:25] Kim: [00:07:25] So they’re making progress slowly but surely. Yes. Right. So I see that you or your pitcher wold there, and I see your daughter, 

[00:07:37] Dionne: [00:07:37] he’ll tell us a little bit about your daughter. So my daughter, uh, her name is L’Oreal like the makeup. We call her Lulu for short. Uh, she works for hot 97, the radio station and her, her name there as they call her there as L’Oreal Luci.

[00:07:55] Um, she’s 30 years old. She actually turned 30 last [00:08:00] week. 

[00:08:00] Kim: [00:08:00] Maybe it’s 

[00:08:01] Dionne: [00:08:01] 30 now. She’s 30 years old. Yes. Oh my God. God. No 

[00:08:07] Kim: [00:08:07] of Lord’s getting all that means I’m getting old 

[00:08:08] Dionne: [00:08:08] too.  um, and she’s done fantastic. She loves her job. She, um, is in charge of the social media and digital aspect of, um, hot 97 and it’s um, you know, she went to school for journalism.

[00:08:28] She went to Buffalo state and um, she loves her.

[00:08:35] Kim: [00:08:35] I remember when she graduated, like. It doesn’t seem that long ago, but no 

[00:08:42] Dionne: [00:08:42] worries. Yes. Oh yeah. Like, um, it really is. Um, and I have to be honest, you know, during the pandemic, I really appreciate her job. We had allows her the flexibility to stay home, um, you [00:09:00] know, cause of the pandemic, Pam pandemic, excuse me, is just so much safer and makes me feel at ease.

[00:09:07] You know, how would 

[00:09:09] Kim: [00:09:09] the best for you during the pandemic? Because you’re on the front line basically. 

[00:09:14] Dionne: [00:09:14] Yeah. So, um, pretty much for the last, uh, 18 months I’ve been working six days a week, not a lot of time for fun stuff. And so last week when I took Laurie away for her birthday, um, You know that the pandemic was tough, you know, um, between the tamp pandemic and social injustice and stuff like that.

[00:09:42] It’s, it’s been a rough year. Um, but I’m not complaining. Like I said, I do love my job and, um, you know, while the whole world’s shut down pretty much, um, you know, I, I didn’t have the luxury of staying home [00:10:00] and, um, working online. I, you know, I still have to go, yeah, I know. And still, and still interact with people and you know, that was, that’s tough too, you know, you try to be as cautious as you can.

[00:10:15] And, um, you know, it just puts you in a real scary spot. You don’t know who, you know, who has it, who does it? It’s, you know, Sorry, you just try to be as carefully again. 

[00:10:29] Kim: [00:10:29] So you feel safer now because you got the vaccine, right? 

[00:10:34] Dionne: [00:10:34] I did get fully vaccinated. I’ve got the Marine Dharna. Am I pronouncing it right?

[00:10:41] No, 

[00:10:42] Kim: [00:10:42] I think it’s 

[00:10:43] Dionne: [00:10:43] third. I don’t know  but Dharna yeah. Um, I was fully vaccinated on February 10th is when I received my second shot. And, um, I wouldn’t say I feel safer [00:11:00] because my daughter is not vaccinated. So I’m still interacting with people at work. A lot of people at work on a daily basis. So I’m always afraid that I bring something home.

[00:11:11] So, um, although I’m vaccinated, I’m still super careful, you know, in terms of wearing a mask, washing my hands and, you know, doing all those things that we try to do to protect ourselves. 

[00:11:27] Kim: [00:11:27] Well, thank you for doing all that you do, because I come in everyone that has had to work through this pandemic because I’m lucky enough that I could sit at home all day bored, but you know, I can stay home, but a lot of people weren’t that fortunate and yeah, I commend you for going out there and still going out there every single day, because it’s not over people think that it’s over, but we’re like still in the thick of it.

[00:11:52] Dionne: [00:11:52] Absolutely. And I think, you know, especially this summer, although more people can get vaccinated, we still have to be [00:12:00] really careful. Um, you know, spring break is coming and just, you know, we all just have to be really careful and, you know, break is here. You didn’t 

[00:12:10] Kim: [00:12:10] see, they’ll see those videos in Miami.

[00:12:13] They twerking 

[00:12:15] Dionne: [00:12:15] crazy. Yeah. I just can’t even imagine. 

[00:12:19] Kim: [00:12:19] I mean, I can’t 

[00:12:19] Dionne: [00:12:19] believe it. And can we just shout out, not just to law enforcement, but all the other people on the front lines, like, you know, bus drivers, um, uh, sanitation people or grocery store clerks. I mean, you know, hospital workers, of course, every body from, you know, maintenance workers to nurses and doctors like shout out to everybody.

[00:12:43] We 

[00:12:44] Kim: [00:12:44] appreciate all that everyone has done during this time. Of course. 

[00:12:48] Dionne: [00:12:48] Yeah, definitely. Let’s get into 

[00:12:51] Kim: [00:12:51] your running journey. When did you start this thing that we all love 

[00:12:57] Dionne: [00:12:57] this recreational running. [00:13:00] Okay. So in the summer of 2012, um, is when I went to a local race in the town where I work in Hampstead, where they had, uh, it’s called Hempstead day.

[00:13:14] And it’s a S it’s, what’s considered a small race, a 5k. Um, normally every year I had worked the race where I was directing traffic and stuff like that. But this year I wanted to actually participate in the race. So I go to this race. We met, I believe I, any park. And before I went out before the race, I remember looking at my local radios, a TV station, news 12, where they was featuring a group called black girls run.

[00:13:48] And they talked about, you know, their running journey and how they meet weekly. And, um, I believe they were already at Kennedy [00:14:00] park and I was like, wow, that’s the race that I’m going to, uh, when I got there, I actually saw the one from this group, black girls run and a few of them, you know, I went up to, I don’t remember exactly who I spoke to, but they were very inviting and told me, you know, they meet.

[00:14:19] Weekly at the Freeport track. Um, and they were like, you should come out. And I was like, okay, you know, I’m pretty, but that was my, I think my second 5k, the first year I did it. Um, I walked in this, this year, that particular year, 2012, I did like a run walk. Um, after that race, I did go to the Freeport track where I met you and some other girls from the group.

[00:14:48] And, you know, you guys were great. It was like, you know, no judgements. It was, you know, everybody was at different levels. I feel like you guys were seasoned runners. [00:15:00] No. 

[00:15:00] Kim: [00:15:00] Okay. Now let me jump in here. So Deanna and I know each other through black girls run, that’s how we both started running. And I actually think that you started running before me because I started running in August of 2012.

[00:15:16] No. Okay. What’s that race? 

[00:15:19] Dionne: [00:15:19] The race was in June, but you started running before me. Yeah. I started running that race in Hempstead was in June of 2012. And, uh, like June, July, August is when I started going to, uh, the Freeport Baldwin track to Brian. Um, and you guys were like always dress cute you always had on you cute outfits and stuff like that.

[00:15:44] And I was like, man, I don’t want to be like that. Um, the girls had mentioned that they were doing a race that was coming up called the diva race. Some were doing a half-marathon others were [00:16:00] doing a 10 K and they were like, you should do it. And I was like, all right now, so I came to the track more often trying to be a little bit more consistent.

[00:16:09] My, uh, walks turned into a little walk, which is, you know, when you run and jog and then I learned how to jog. I did my first half marathon via the diva race. And I told her at that October, and it was the highest artists thing ever. O M G my daughter was in college at the time. And I remember coming home, I could barely walk.

[00:16:38] I was like, this is crazy. It was hard. It was to, to date. Then it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, but I felt so accomplished. I was like, wow. Um, many girls from black girls run had done that race. So, you know, we had all seen each other, you know, at the finish line. And that’s the race where they give you the [00:17:00] champagne and the Rose, the tea era, you know, pretty popular in different States.

[00:17:07] And then, uh, fast forward, a little bit someone in that group, um, same running group had mentioned. You know, they did try out blondes and they’re a triathlete and it was the first time I had honestly come, ever heard of those two words, triathlon and trap triathlete. Did you know anything about triathlons?

[00:17:27] Who would be the triathlete before BGR? 

[00:17:30] Kim: [00:17:30] You know, I watched the Kona race before, but I never really, like, it was just something on TV that I watch. You know, if you asked me what the sport wasn’t thinking like that I probably wouldn’t have known, but yeah, this is another little tidbit is that I got into triathlon because of Dionne.

[00:17:51] Dionne: [00:17:51] Oh 

[00:17:53] Kim: [00:17:53] yeah. Because you guys were training for that first race weekend or was 

[00:17:58] Dionne: [00:17:58] that [00:18:00] 2013? So 

[00:18:03] Kim: [00:18:03] we went from running to triathlon like that. Right. But I was the following year because 

[00:18:09] Dionne: [00:18:09] I saw 

[00:18:10] Kim: [00:18:10] you guys and I’m like, what are you guys doing? And you guys would train. And I didn’t know, I didn’t, you know, I watched it on TV, but didn’t really know.

[00:18:18] But yeah, you’re the reason why you and Lisa Lewis, like you’re you guys are the reason why I got into 

[00:18:24] Dionne: [00:18:24] triathlon. Wow. It’s um, so like I said, one of the girls in the group had mentioned she was a triathlete, does triathlons. And I have, unlike you, I have never saw it on TV. Never heard of those two words.

[00:18:39] And she mentioned she was doing a seminar about it. Um, in December of, uh, 2012 at Queens, uh, one of the colleges. So I went, a bunch of us, went from the group and it was so interesting. It was, you know, basically a triathlon [00:19:00] is a multi-sport where you slim bike and run. And that order and like marathons, there’s different distances.

[00:19:07] They, you know, everything from a smaller race, up to a bigger race. And, um, they mentioned in this seminar that there was a sprint triathlon coming up in April of 2013 and we should do it. And I was like, man, I just did this half marathon. And now you want me to add, uh, swimming and biking. Like, it sounds like really crazy, you know?

[00:19:35] And I was like, no, but where do I sign up? You know, it intrigued me a little bit, you know, So, um, so 2013, I did my first sprint triathlon, which was at the time the mini mighty man it’s, uh, the distance for sprint triathlon is useful 800 meters. You [00:20:00] bet, six miles and then you’ve run. Uh, some of, most of them are five Ks and that was super hard.

[00:20:07] I was like, Oh my God, I got like a coach for a group of us trained for it. And it was incredible. It was like the, the most amazing thing that I had done. Like I had done this half marathon in October, 2012, and it’s fast forward 2013. I did this sprint triathlon. So that’s kind of where I got hooked. I would say, um, and just seeing other women doing it, I was like, yeah, this isn’t bad.

[00:20:41] You know? Um, that summer, the coach, um, my coach, she’s still my coach, coach jacks. Uh, she was doing, um, I think it was Louisville. I believe she was doing an iron man that year called [00:21:00] iron man, Billy. And she was like, you know, you want to come? And I was like, okay. So her and her group of people, they drove to, when we go from New York and I took a plane and met them there and I got to spectate at an iron man.

[00:21:16] And I was like, this is incredible. It was August. It was hot. They don’t do the race in August anymore. Cause it’s, um, I think that was the last year they did it in August because of the extreme heat conditions. Um, it was, it felt like 110 degrees to me in the shades, just standing still. So I can’t even imagine what those athletes felt like, but just spectating at that arm, man was such an amazing experience.

[00:21:45] Um, uh, her mother was very good at spectating in terms of knowing when to meet her at different locations, you know, after the slim, after the bike, you know, in different [00:22:00] spots during the run, because, uh, my coast Jack’s had done other iron man’s. Like, I was like, man, she’s done this more than once 

[00:22:08] Kim: [00:22:08] crazy,

[00:22:11] Dionne: [00:22:11] you know? And, um, it was that August. I was like, you know what, I want to do an iron man. And she was like, all right, you know, um, so fast forward a little bit more that, so that. Spectating was an August of 2013. Um, I had done a half Ironman in, uh, 2013 also towards the end of the year I did the mighty Montauk.

[00:22:42] I think that’s what it’s called, um, out here in New York, on long Island. That was super hard. So that was, it’s kind of like every race was super hard, right? Oh my God. They really are. They really aren’t. [00:23:00] So I ended up, uh, doing my first active spectating in 2013 that Arvin in August. I did my first full iron man in 2014, uh, which was iron man mantra, blond bitches in Canada.

[00:23:19] Um, it was hard. It was, 

[00:23:25] Kim: [00:23:25] I know it was, I can’t even imagine. Cause 70.3 is hard. I can’t even imagine what doubled the distances. 

[00:23:33] Dionne: [00:23:33] 70.3 is hard and you know, one 40.6 was extreme, you know, extremely difficult. Um, we were very worried about the cutoff times because after I finished the, uh, the bike, it’s a very, it’s very hilly there.

[00:23:52] Um, just like marathons, you have, you know, locations where it’s flat, um, and Ironman [00:24:00] triathlons, just same thing. You have, um, areas where it’s either hilly or it’s flat, but it’s windy. So this particular place, the weather is nice, but it’s very hilly. Um, And when I got off the bike, I remember them rushing me.

[00:24:18] The volunteers rushing me into the tent when you get changed and was like, you gotta hurry up. You have literally five minutes before you, um, get cuddle off, you know, cause for each discipline you have a cutoff times, you know, where you have to do it within a certain amount of time. Otherwise you’re not considered, you know, an argument.

[00:24:41] So when I got off the bike, I literally had five minutes to,

[00:24:47] wow. I didn’t even change. I didn’t ha I put on sneakers of course. But the top that I had meant to wear to run in, I did not have time to change. It was wet. It was, you [00:25:00] know, you know, you have it’s, you know, like trying to take a broad top of off when you wet it. It was too much pressure. Um, So then, you know, I finished and I remember the feeling was just like so amazing.

[00:25:15] And I was like, I’m never doing this again. This is the, this is it’s too hard. It’s I’m never doing this again. And then I was like, you know, like a week later it’s like, all right, when is the next one? Where else can I do it? 

[00:25:29] Kim: [00:25:29] And now you’re seventh, seven iron man’s later. 

[00:25:34] Dionne: [00:25:34] Yes. 

[00:25:35] Kim: [00:25:35] That’s crazy. That is crazy. You know what?

[00:25:39] I’m going to get into this later, but I read your book and I didn’t know that you did a seven. I knew you did a lot. I didn’t know you did seven iron mans. 

[00:25:51] Dionne: [00:25:51] I did seven. So basically from 2014, up until, uh, 2009. I [00:26:00] didn’t, I did an Ironman every year, since 2014. Um, because of the pandemic, I wasn’t able to do it in 2020.

[00:26:07] I was schedules to iron man like Placid. Um, and I did two last year. Um, I did iron man macho blot it in August. And then in September I did iron man, Maryland. Um, which was my plans for 2020. I was going to do too. But you know, life happens. So, you know, don’t, I’m curious to know if, you know, I mean, I know, uh, Races are starting to slowly come back, but I’m interested to see if full Ironman races will be back this year.

[00:26:51] Kim: [00:26:51] There was a race this past weekend in Miami, um, challenge Miami. Yeah. So they’re racing in the [00:27:00] South and that was 

[00:27:01] Dionne: [00:27:01] a 70.3 

[00:27:02] Kim: [00:27:02] crash. Yeah, I think so. So if we want to race, I think we’re going to have to go to the South. Yeah. So in addition to the seven iron mans, you’ve done 19 marathons. 

[00:27:16] Dionne: [00:27:16] I’ve done a bunch of marathons, which I 

[00:27:18] Kim: [00:27:18] did no, either.

[00:27:19] I did not know that you’ve done that many marathons. I mean, I know you did a lot of New York city marathons, like over the years, but

[00:27:29] Dionne: [00:27:29] I did 19 marathons and I guess by now it would be 20 because when the book came out, I hadn’t done the, um, I did a virtual marathon. In 2020, the long Island marathon that was canceled. I did it virtually. So, um, that doesn’t show up in athletes, but it, it shows up on my Garmin. It counts for me. Um, a lot of marathons Kim.

[00:27:57] Um, I did [00:28:00] as like run cations, um, some that, uh, many that you are a part of and you organized, um, which was great. And some of them, I used as training for man races. Yeah. 

[00:28:17] Kim: [00:28:17] And I, um, I was reading what you said, like Barbados was like one of your hardest marathons that you ever did. 

[00:28:25] Dionne: [00:28:25] Oh my God. That was the year when I wanted to stop after the halfway point and Wendy.

[00:28:33] Okay. With that, us on the trip had never done a marathon before never trained for a marathon before she was like, come on, let’s do it. We can do it that no, honestly, Barbados was one of the, I don’t know if I didn’t train well enough for it. I know it was hot. It 

[00:28:51] Kim: [00:28:51] was, I think it was the heat. And I don’t know if you remember about, at the turnaround 

[00:28:55] Dionne: [00:28:55] point, we re 

[00:28:57] Kim: [00:28:57] I ran into you.

[00:28:59] Yes. 

[00:29:00] [00:28:59] Dionne: [00:28:59] And another girl. And it was you and Wendy, and 

[00:29:03] Kim: [00:29:03] there’s a picture of the four of us. And like, we’re talking to you and I just remember, like, you didn’t want to go on, but you have Wendy bear and it’s like, even if she wasn’t there, that you think you would have just. I would have stopped. I would have stopped all hard.

[00:29:20] I mean, people don’t realize how hot it gets and this is in December and in the Caribbean. But our bait also is so far South, like it’s very close to the equator. So that’s why it’s so hot. But those, I agree with you. That’s like one of the hardest places to run it because of that extreme 

[00:29:37] Dionne: [00:29:37] heat. The heat was, and I have done, uh, at that point I had done Jamaica marathon twice, which is also hot.

[00:29:46] Um, those races start at 5:00 AM. So you’ve done, you know, uh, by nine. 10 11 o’clock in the morning, but Barbados, for some reason, for me that till this day was still [00:30:00] my hardest marathon. And if Wendy wasn’t there, I most likely would not have continued. The, the water that they were given out at that point was tasted like tea.

[00:30:10] They said, yes, it literally tasted like, and you know, they say, you’re not supposed to drink it, you know, cold, cold water, but I needed cold water, even a port on my head just felt like bath water, but Wendy got me through it. That’s, you know, she got me through 

[00:30:30] Kim: [00:30:30] it less than that, that I remember when we went back, I don’t know.

[00:30:35] It might’ve been two years later. It was even worse. Like the girls were like, had to get off and get an ambulance. It was so bad. It was like, It was really bad. Like after that, if we ever went back, I would discourage people for signing up for the marathon. Like it’s it’s a lot.

[00:30:54] Dionne: [00:30:54] Yeah. Do you remember what time of day that race started?

[00:30:57] Was it, it did start at 5:00 [00:31:00] AM. Okay. Yeah.

[00:31:02] Kim: [00:31:02] The sun comes up there. It’s like, by like six 30, it’s like

[00:31:05] Dionne: [00:31:05] hot or ready. Yeah. So ready in the seventies, you know, every, and then every hour it gets hotter and hotter, but, uh, it was a good time, but it was definitely one of the hardest marathons I’ve done. 

[00:31:20] Kim: [00:31:20] I want to talk a little bit about your fitness journey, because it seems like in the last, I dunno, like two to three years, like there was like a switch with you and it’s the, I mean, you’ve always been like very active and.

[00:31:37] I would say a little bit competitive as well, but it seems like you, there was a switch and you started taking, you know, your nutrition more seriously and things like that. So what, what was that catalyst for you? What made you, you know, kind of like switch directions? 

[00:31:54] Dionne: [00:31:54] So, um, although I had been doing iron mans and running [00:32:00] marathons and stuff like that, and I’m competitive, I think with myself, um, I, I noticed that like, I wasn’t really getting any much better.

[00:32:16] Um, and I’ll never forget, I won’t mention this person’s name, but, you know, words hurt. Um, I, I remember going to, how can I put this without you trying to even guess who it is? I went to swim, practice, pool, swim practice one day. And one of the coaches who I won’t mention their name, um, I, I had just come back from one of the big run cations that you had planned.

[00:32:49] And they were like, where’d you come from? I, you know, maybe had a tan or whatever, and the person, and I said, Oh, I went to X, Y, and Z to do a marathon. And they were like, [00:33:00] you got all these marathons, how come you kind of like, look, you know, kind of suggesting that I was overweight. And I remember my feelings being so hurt because of those words, you know?

[00:33:14] And I have for the most part, pretty much thick skin, but a lot of work that I work in, you got to have some thick skin. Right. But I just remember feeling so like, and I remember talking to one of the other girls about it and they were like, Oh, you know, uh, Men just say the craziest things. Okay. So now, you know, it’s a guy,

[00:33:39] um, you know, so, so, so words hurt, but in my, in my journey, um, I kind of always thought because I was running and because I was doing these RMMs that I kinda just gave myself permission to eat whatever I wanted, you know, Oh, I ran a marathon, you know, I can, I [00:34:00] can eat whatever I want for the rest of the week or rest of the month, or because I’m training for this Ironman.

[00:34:06] I could eat whatever I want. And the truth is, you know, depending on what you want your results to be, whether it’s to maintain weight, lose weight for get a little bit better at the discipline. A lot of it has to do not just with training itself. But the nutrition part of it, you know, and not only was I thinking that I could eat anything, I want, I’m not talking about like salads and, you know, grilled chicken.

[00:34:41] I was eating literally whatever I wanted, you know, pints of ice cream and, you know, Oh, I’ll run it all off, you know? And you know, there’s a saying, it sounds cliche. You can’t have run a bad diet, but it’s really true. And my nutrition for a long time just had [00:35:00] not met the standards of where I was in training.

[00:35:04] And once I started eating better, I noticed my times got a little bit better. I felt a little bit better. I wasn’t as winded. And I started feeling better from the inside out. Um, and that, that makes a big difference, your, your nutrition. So my workouts pretty much stayed the same, but once I changed what I was eating in terms of, you know, the, the more common sense stuff of, you know, not, um, too many fried foods and not too many sweets and stuff like that, um, my body changed physically, but you know, it also changed up here mentally.

[00:35:49] Also, I felt a lot better. Um, my runtimes, you know, increased. And I just felt overall [00:36:00] much better, 

[00:36:02] Kim: [00:36:02] anything out like totally like me, the airy. 

[00:36:07] Dionne: [00:36:07] So like you, um, and I’ll never forget when you went vegan. Oh, I was vegetarian, vegetarian. I couldn’t give up eggs 

[00:36:17] Kim: [00:36:17] and cheese, but to me I could give up. 

[00:36:21] Dionne: [00:36:21] Yeah. And then one day you just had bacon after the baby.

[00:36:26] I think I remember I’ll never forget. Um, so more recently I changed to a more plant-based diet. Um, the end of the end of 2019, beginning of 2020. Yeah. The end of night, 2019. I wanted to try, you know, a more plant-based diet and see how that made me feel. And honestly, it, it, it made me [00:37:00] feel the best I had ever felt going plant base.

[00:37:04] Um, I’ve kind of fallen off the wagon a little bit, um, in terms of be a totally plant-based. So now I call myself more, uh, flexible, I guess plant-based at convenience. Um, but the less, the more plant-based foods that I consume makes me feel better. Um, so I, I did go down that route, you know, more recently, and I like it, but you have to be careful because, uh, you know, just because you do a plant-based diet, doesn’t always necessarily mean it’s the healthiest because you have to watch the process stuff, you know, um, Because you’re eating plant-based if you know, impossible burgers or, you know, those types of things are great, [00:38:00] but they’re processed.

[00:38:01] So you have to, you know, just like if you ate meat, you you’d want to eat probably red meat and moderation, same thing with those burgers on plant-based burgers and stuff, a lot of them are processed, so you have to have those in moderation. 

[00:38:18] Kim: [00:38:18] So when you plant base, how do you get enough protein? Because I know you could get it from beans and things like that, but how do you get enough?

[00:38:27] Really? 

[00:38:29] Dionne: [00:38:29] Yeah. So I supplement a lot of my stuff. My foods, when I can’t get it from food, I’ll have protein shakes, um, beans. Um, I do do the impossible burgers. I more recently I’ve tried to limit those. Um, you know, there, there, there’s a lot of vegetables that have some protein in it, you know,

[00:38:58] you just gotta find [00:39:00] what works for you. It’s, it’s, it’s hard, but you know, there are a lot of things that have protein in it that doesn’t have to be meat. So you 

[00:39:09] Kim: [00:39:09] want to trim down a ton. Do you attribute that to the plant-based diet? 

[00:39:15] Dionne: [00:39:15] Not just being plant-based. I would attribute that a lot too.

[00:39:23] And I don’t like, I don’t like using the word diet, but definitely lifestyle, lifestyle. Yeah, exactly. You know? Um, and I S I started counting my macro macro nutrients, which are, you know, um, your carbs, proteins and fat. Um, you know, basically you can calculate what you need depending on your age, your height, your weight, your gender, and things like that, your activity level.

[00:39:58] And, uh, [00:40:00] that seems to work for me where, um, I do macro counting as well

[00:40:08] Kim: [00:40:08] to get into that. But my attention span is just 

[00:40:12] Dionne: [00:40:12] that. Yeah, it’s a lot of work. It really 

[00:40:17] Kim: [00:40:17] is. I mean, like it’s easy when you can scan the labels and you know, it just gets in there, but when you have to manually input it and figure things out, it’s not easy. 

[00:40:29] Dionne: [00:40:29] It’s not easy. Um, so now, like I can kind of eyeball things a lot better, but, uh, when I first started watching my nutrition very closely, um, Macro counting and using an app was the way to go for me because otherwise I was kind of just guessing how much I’m eating, you know, um, or, you know, and that can either make you eat overeat or under eat, you know, when you’re [00:41:00] just guessing.

[00:41:00] So, you know, now I kind of, I don’t use the app as much anymore. I kind of go based on how I feel, you know, try not to be overstuffed and try to just eat until I’m satisfied, you know, save the rest for later. If I can, you know, my portions are, you know, five to six, maybe even seven small portions throughout the day.

[00:41:28] And that’s including snacks and fruits and vegetables and stuff like that. 

[00:41:34] Kim: [00:41:34] So this running slash triathlon and fitness journey has led you into coaching as well. Yes, the hat. Why haven’t, why did you decide to lend your knowledge to others? 

[00:41:49] Dionne: [00:41:49] So, and that’s a good question. So I wanted people to really experience what I felt as a [00:42:00] triathlete.

[00:42:00] Like anybody can do this as long as you put in the work and you know, you give it your best, you know? Um, and I wanted other women, especially to, to realize like, Hey, this is what a triathlon is. This is who we’re triathlete is, is we don’t all fit under the same, big umbrella. We’re all sizes. Um, we’re all shapes.

[00:42:29] Um, we’re all ages. You know, one thing I didn’t mention when I went to that race at Louisville was watching people in their sixties and seventies like doing this iron man race. It was incredible. So, you know, we don’t all fit under the same umbrella in terms of age size, um, occupation. Um, so that’s one of the main reasons why I started coaching.

[00:42:58] Um, [00:43:00] when I do retire from my present job, I will have a whole lot more time to dedicate more time to coaching this last year. Um, my coaching was very limited because, um, you know, I was working six days a week, so it was really hard for me to, to get into coaching and not give athletes. My full attention plus races were canceled.

[00:43:26] So not a lot of people were. Um, interested in coaching. So, but next year, by this time, next year, I would have a whole lot more time dedicated to coaching. More coaching more full-time you could say, I 

[00:43:41] Kim: [00:43:41] remember when I texted you about it. I was like, I want to do this brace. I think it was a way to Connecticut.

[00:43:49] Yeah. And I wanted you to culture, but I ended up changing my life because I was just traveling so much that they liked that whenever I do get back in such triathlon, [00:44:00] you’re going to be like, 

[00:44:01] Dionne: [00:44:01] good, good. Thank you, Kevin. But I’m not 

[00:44:04] Kim: [00:44:04] doing any Ironman races here. We’re going to have to find some other brand Alon to do because yeah, iron man they’re over from me.

[00:44:15] Dionne: [00:44:15] I get it. I get it. 

[00:44:19] Kim: [00:44:19] So what’s up with your book. What made you want to write a book? This one,

[00:44:30] and I want to preface this by saying that I read it on Kindle. Okay. If you’re going to pick up this book, you need to get the physical version because you have all of those, like, uh, what do you call it? The journals and you know, 

[00:44:44] Dionne: [00:44:44] the book. 

[00:44:45] Kim: [00:44:45] So tell us about your book. What made you want to write a book? 

[00:44:49] Dionne: [00:44:49] So I feel like I have such a story to tell with regards to my personal journey, um, where it allows people [00:45:00] to not only get to know me a little bit better.

[00:45:03] You know, let’s face it. Like you see things on Facebook and you’re like, Oh, this seems so easy. You know? And I, and I wanted people to really understand where I started, how I started, why I started kind of like what we’re discussing here. And hopefully it, I wanted it to be able to inspire someone to do, to get moving.

[00:45:30] Really. You know, whether that for them is, you know, hitting weights in the gym or do their first 5k or do a triathlon regardless of what the distances. Um, and I honestly, if I ever write another book, one of the things that I want to talk about, because each race that you do and you can relate to this a lot, each race that you do, [00:46:00] whether it’s a 5k.

[00:46:02] A sprint or an iron man, there’s a story behind every race, right? Like, you know how you got up that morning, how you train for that race, you know, maybe some drama in between, you know? Um, and I could literally tell you a story about each iron man that I’ve done each marathon that I’ve done each 10, K, that I’ve done where I remember things that’s too much to tell, like in a Facebook post, like who likes reading more on Facebook posts?

[00:46:34] I really don’t. Um, and that’s kinda like how the book started. It was one of those 10 day challenges where it was like, tell us every day for the next 10 days about your running challenge or something like that. I think that’s what it was called and run challenge. And each story that I told for those 10 days, [00:47:00] the, from, from the first day till attempt day, was leading up to my iron man race and the postal long.

[00:47:08] And I remember saying for each post, I’m sorry, just post as long, you know, and that’s kind of what got me, cause people were texting me on the side and was like, you should write a story about that and stuff like that. And I was like, you know what? And I, that’s kind of where it started because I had so much to say that I couldn’t say in a Facebook post.

[00:47:26] And if I ever did write another book, I want to be able to tell you guys the story behind each race, particularly the longer distances, you know, the stories behind each of them, you know, with the trends. Wow. 

[00:47:44] Kim: [00:47:44] In this book, you did say that you were writing another book. 

[00:47:48] Dionne: [00:47:48] I did. I did know you, you 

[00:47:51] Kim: [00:47:51] put it out there, so you have to do it 

[00:47:52] Dionne: [00:47:52] now.

[00:47:53] I have to, I put it on The Run Wave, so it’s out there, but I, I would like to tell [00:48:00] people about the journey of each race that I’ve done in the longer distances, because there’s a lot that goes into it, you know, with regards to getting up early, finding the time, you know, um, missing functions with, you know, like barbecues and, you know, I remember one year I, I didn’t go to one of my friend’s weddings cause I was scheduled for an Ironman, you know?

[00:48:27] Um, so you know, you kind of feel bad about those things, but like anything else it’s, it’s, it’s been a lifestyle for me, Kim, you know, just like, like you, it. I’m never bored. If, if, if swimming was on my schedule for training for today and I couldn’t make it to swim, I have other options, you know, where I could jump on the bike, you know, or I could go for a run.

[00:48:56] Um, so I’m never bored in that aspect. [00:49:00] There’s, there’s always something to do, you know? And I, I liked that part of it, you know, it’s like, you know, people say, you know, movement is medicine and it, it truly has been that for me. 

[00:49:14] Kim: [00:49:14] Yeah. I was just on someone else’s show and I told him like, training for a triathlon was like some of the best times.

[00:49:22] In my life that I can, you know, period, because like we formed so many friendships bonds. Yes. Yeah. Through this, you know, I train them, my buddy, Alison, and she’s like one of my best days sensei and yeah. I just think like the, the dedication it takes to do PRI Athlon of any distance, like people don’t understand really what it takes.

[00:49:48] And I commend you for working a full-time job and train it for a full I, cause I can do, I just don’t have the time or yeah. I just, I can’t do it. So I commend you [00:50:00] for, you know, putting in the effort and you’ve improved draft drastically over the years, you know? So, yeah, you’ve put in the work to get the results, you know, and I’m proud of you.

[00:50:12] Super D . 

[00:50:15] Dionne: [00:50:15] Thank you. Straight Kim. She straight Kim y’all. Yeah, 

[00:50:18] Kim: [00:50:18] like I follow a lot of things that you did. I don’t, I don’t know if you remember, but years ago y’all was doing the nine plus one. I didn’t even know what nine plus one was, but we did the Scotland 

[00:50:31] Dionne: [00:50:31] racist central park. Dressed in our kilts and stuff like that.

[00:50:36] Yes. 

[00:50:37] Kim: [00:50:37] Where I saw you guys and, you know, we all did our own race and I remember you texting me and I probably was at mile three Ayala finish already. And you were like, where are you at? I’m like, you know, I’m ready. I’m still running the race. 

[00:50:53] Dionne: [00:50:53] And you said, take care. 

[00:50:55] Kim: [00:50:55] Y’all leaving. You know, you said, take care, do good.

[00:50:58] And you know, but those are like [00:51:00] the things that I remember. And that was a catalyst for me, watching you to do the nonplus one to get into New York city marathon. So 

[00:51:10] Dionne: [00:51:10] that it’s like, it really is, it’s really is a community. Right. Um, and when you find the right community, it, it makes you accountable. It makes it, you know, fun.

[00:51:25] Um, it, it, it, it makes a big difference, you know, And, and that’s in any distance, like you said, training for any distance. It doesn’t have to be the long distance to find this accountability, you know? And it, it, it feels right. 

[00:51:43] Kim: [00:51:43] And I don’t, you know, Brett, right. Of course. So Brett Saxby yesterday, coincidentally.

[00:51:49] Okay. 

[00:51:50] Dionne: [00:51:50] He said, he faxed me while I was away. He said your picture for 

[00:51:54] Kim: [00:51:54] zoo. He’s like, because of me, he knows you. And because of you, he wants to do [00:52:00] try. So I was like, wow, 

[00:52:02] Dionne: [00:52:02] wow. He literally, he texted me while I was away last week. And he sent me the same picture that you’re talking about. And he did mention that he’s interested in doing a triathlon.

[00:52:13] And that’s what I want. Like, I’m not really sure where the sport was when we were in school and, you know, stuff like that. Like, it’s just something. At least where I grew up anyway, no one talked about it. I didn’t, I didn’t know anything about it until I was 40 years old. So to hear other people say that it makes me feel really good, you know?

[00:52:35] Um, and that’s, regardless of any distance that they’re doing 

[00:52:40] Kim: [00:52:40] and you know what, that’s like the power of social media today. Cause I don’t post my workouts. Like I used to cause I’ve been in the game so long now and it’s like, you know, it gets old, but I see people coming up behind us and they’re doing what we did.

[00:52:57] And I’m like, you know, they’re paving the [00:53:00] way for, we paved the way for them and they’re paving the way for the next generation. So, you know, it all comes full circle. 

[00:53:08] Dionne: [00:53:08] It does. 

[00:53:10] Kim: [00:53:10] I want to tell everyone to. Pick up Deon’s book. Tell him the name of your book and where they could get it. 

[00:53:18] Dionne: [00:53:18] The name of it, the book is on a mission.

[00:53:20] Um, plan your goals and journal your vision. It’s not just, uh, a tell-all book all about myself or anything like that. This book is about you also where you there’s a journalist side. Um, there’s QR codes that you can scan with using your smartphone, where it’ll lead you to a video that I recorded videos that got reported.

[00:53:45] Excuse me. Uh, you can get the book, uh, on, but it’s 1999, or you can get it out on my website, which is DD slash dash. Excuse me. So either place, you can [00:54:00] get it. If you got it on, Amazon is, um, it would go straight to you, but if you got it on my website, um, I could sign it for you if you like and send it.

[00:54:12] Kim: [00:54:12] But you’ll get like Brett Coulter. He said, I know a celebrity, so you’ll get the celebrity signed 

[00:54:17] Dionne: [00:54:17] copy. Yeah, because the website, 

[00:54:23] Kim: [00:54:23] I loved reading it because I felt 

[00:54:25] Dionne: [00:54:25] like I 

[00:54:26] Kim: [00:54:26] was reading my journey to almost 

[00:54:28] Dionne: [00:54:28] right. Well, you’re part of you and you are part of my journey. Like, you know, we, we, we slammed together so much, you know, at the pool and you know, I’m always, always try to keep up with Kim in the pool, you know, it’s.

[00:54:44] It’s all about journey. Right. But 

[00:54:47] Kim: [00:54:47] yeah, I love it. I loved reading the book. I love seeing the pictures where you guys are at the diva race with the feather boas. Like it’s a good read. It really is. 

[00:54:57] Dionne: [00:54:57] Thank you. It’s an easy read too. It’s [00:55:00] like, you know, yeah. That’s going to take you for a week to three days.

[00:55:03] Kim: [00:55:03] Yeah. Cause you’re telling stories and it keeps, you know, keeps the reader engaged and you even have like quotes from stories from other people in the book as well, which was nice to read. But yeah, I’m just, I’m proud of everything that you do. 

[00:55:18] Dionne: [00:55:18] Thank you, Kim. I really appreciate that. 

[00:55:21] Kim: [00:55:21] I’m glad that I finally got to talk to you and my audience can get to know you so we can expand your audience as well because yeah, I think especially a triathlon is not enough of us enough women or enough black women.

[00:55:38] Enough 

[00:55:38] Dionne: [00:55:38] black people, period, period. 

[00:55:42] Kim: [00:55:42] You know, though. Yeah. You telling your story and you being a cultural, hopefully, you know, encourage more of us to get into the sport because we’re running, you know, we’re, we’re making a little bit of a dent and running, but triathlon it’s a different beast. [00:56:00] Right. And it takes a lot to want to get into the sport, but when people see you doing it, then that’s going to encourage others to want to do, especially if you’re you’re 

[00:56:09] Dionne: [00:56:09] coaching.

[00:56:11] Yeah. I know. You know, I don’t know if people would feel intimidated, like, Oh my God, that’s, that’s, you know, swimming, biking and running along one day, you know? Um, it, even if you did it not to race, if you did it as just a. You know, to keep in shape to, you know, have this lifestyle. It’s I personally love it.

[00:56:33] Um, running after awhile, it’s been hard on my body. So feeding things up between, you know, swimming and biking, you know, helps a little bit. And like I said, I’m, I’m never bored at any one thing. Cause there’s always something to do. And 

[00:56:50] Kim: [00:56:50] when you find your person that you can train with, it’s like, it makes it all the more fun.

[00:56:56] Dionne: [00:56:56] It really does. He really does. You know, it, [00:57:00] it holds you and that other person accountable, because there’s going to be days when you don’t feel like getting up early or doing something after work and that other person’s talking on you like, come on, we gotta go. And. And vice versa. It really does help.

[00:57:14] Kim: [00:57:14] Yeah. So I want to thank Dionne for being on The Run Wave Podcast. It was a pleasure having you on, and I hope that we will, once this panoramic 

[00:57:25] Dionne: [00:57:25] is over, we’ll see each other in person. 

[00:57:29] Kim: [00:57:29] Good to hang out and like the good old days. God. Remember when we went to that party, Lisa had our birthday party at that spot.

[00:57:37] Dionne: [00:57:37] Which one 

[00:57:39] Kim: [00:57:39] did she have? 50th birthday party. 

[00:57:41] Dionne: [00:57:41] Oh yes, yes, yes, yes. Yeah. 

[00:57:44] Kim: [00:57:44] Like the good old days, man. 

[00:57:46] Dionne: [00:57:46] No, I know. But having me on your show, I love your show. Karen. I’m so proud of you as well. 

[00:57:53] Kim: [00:57:53] Like 

[00:57:54] Dionne: [00:57:54] what’s informed you, like, you know, Got all the questions and answers coming. It’s I [00:58:00] love it. I really do love your show.

[00:58:01] I’m really proud of you. And I love the name too. Where did the name come from it? Can you tell me about that? 

[00:58:08] Kim: [00:58:08] Well, and this is funny because I had another name that I wanted to use, but it was already taken. So I was in bed and I was like, I’ll ask my husband to help me find a name. And I was like the run.

[00:58:21] I need a, I need an ending. And he came up with wave and he had no idea that there are waves and races, which is crazy and it just fit The Run Wave. Yeah. Fit 

[00:58:31] Dionne: [00:58:31] it fits. I love it. And where can I get a sweatshirt? 

[00:58:35] Kim: [00:58:35] The Run girl slash shop. 

[00:58:39] Dionne: [00:58:39] Okay. Okay. I’m going to check it out. 

[00:58:44] Kim: [00:58:44] Of course. Tell everybody where they can find you on social media.

[00:58:48] Dionne: [00:58:48] Sure. So, um, my Instagram is D D underscore fitspiration. That’s Instagram and on Facebook, um, just under my [00:59:00] name, Dionne to core film, 

[00:59:02] Kim: [00:59:02] and we’ll leave all of her links down below so you can follow her and you can pick up her book. It is a good read. So make sure you get it from her website so she don’t have to pay Amazon.

[00:59:13] Y’all get it from her website so she can sign it and you get a ride from the source. So again, thank you for being on The Run Wave Podcast and hope. See you soon. 

[00:59:25] Dionne: [00:59:25] Stay safe and stay healthy. 

[00:59:27] Kim: [00:59:27] Good seeing you. You too. Bye. All right. I hope you enjoyed my chat with Dionne. I will leave all of her contact information, uh, down below.

[00:59:39] You can scroll up right now and check it out. It was such a pleasure chatting with her, having her on The Run Wave Podcast is always great when I can chat with people that I know in real life. And she is one of those people. So I hope you enjoyed her story. Make sure you pick up her [01:00:00] book. I will leave the link for that book down below, and remember to order it on her website and you’ll get an actual autograph copy straight from Deon.

[01:00:08] So thank you again for tuning into this episode of The Run Wave Podcast. And I will catch up on the next one later. Thank you so much for tuning into the show. Be sure to subscribe to The Run Wave on your favorite podcast app and leave us a review of the show on Apple podcasts. It would really help me out if you are a runner that has a story to tell, and you would like to be on the show, you can email that com or send us a DM on Instagram to the run wave.

[01:00:44] See you next time. .

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